Debt collectors can ruin your life, it’s granted. Even if your debt is about five hundred dollars, you can receive up to 40 calls from debt collector per day. Relatives, friends and employers will be threatened too. One overdue payday loan and your credit may be destroyed for years if not forever. You may have no debt at all but by mistake become a target for debt collector.
There are thousands of stories collected by Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) during the latest years. The Bureau says that such type of complaints is the most popular ones.
On January 12th, 2017 CFPB published national survey in which borrowers’ attitude to debt collectors was revealed. About 25% of the respondents noted that they felt threatened. Nearly forty present said that they receive four-six calls from debt collector a week, more than a half declared that the purpose of pursue — debt itself — was incorrect in one way or the other. Either the debt amount was wrong or they didn’t have the debt at all!
According to the US laws borrowers as any other consumers should be defended from harassment and abuse. But debt collectors use holes in legislation in their business. That’s why the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau tries to implement more detailed rules for collectors’ activity. For example, the Bureau proposes to limit the number of cash calls during the week or to make debt collectors verify all the debtors’ data before calling.
The CFPB also made a study concerning potential risks from online grounds there overdue debts are sold and resold to debt-collectors. The system works like this: after your payday lender or credit-card issuer has failed to collect your overdue debt he tries to receive at least some money and sells your debt to a debt-collector. After it, you will deal with actively tuned third-party cash collector who will pursue you until you pay.
Online markets are fraught with danger of sensitive consumer data leaks, because buyers on that markets are neither responsible nor caring. Personal information of borrowers could even end up in the hands of riminals.
While battle between the CFPB and an alliance of credit and debt collection professionals takes place, we will help you keep debt collectors at bay.
Here are some Q&A about debt collection.
If I am threatened with the debt I don’t owe, what should I do?
First of all, apply to your lawyer. If you can’t do it, we advise you to seek for help in the FTC (consumer bureau) or your state attorney general office. Ask the debt collector:
- If they have documents that prove their right to collect debts.
- Which person exactly has the debt? Maybe it’s not you.
- If the amount they seek for is precise.
Often debt collectors add fees and pennies to amount that are not legitimate.
How can I tell a legitimate collector from an illegitimate one?
First of all, ask a caller to tell you their firm’s legal address, postal code and a phone number, their surname and initials, and original lender name. If the caller is a fraud, they will disconnect at once.
I want to stop calls from debt collectors. Can I?
Yes. According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, you need to contact your debt collector in writing and ask them to stop contacting you. You can find templates of such letters on the CFPB website. But be careful: absence of cash calls doesn’t mean absence of debt.